WAS ATXIII STAGED?

2015-09-15

It appears that the story of this year’s Alliance Tournament has not reached its ripe conclusion.

On September 14, a whistleblower posting made to the EVE Online forums by ex-Warlords member DHB Wildcat indicated collusion in this year’s AT, including at least one rigged match between the triumphant Warlords of the Deep and the runner-up Camel Empire. The posting included a tirade of details, including a copy and pasted Skype chat with Warlords’ AT fleet commander Kadesh that elaborated on both legal and illegal cooperation between Warlords and Camel.

Featured, Kadesh (Left) and DHB (Right). If there was collusion between Camels and Warlords, could it have been to sway the odds in their favor on eve-bet?

Accusations of collusion between these two alliances was previously brought up in an interview by TMC with Warlords spokesperson, and flagship operator, Bluemelon, shortly after Warlords’ ATXIII victory. His statement is included below:

“The question of collusion and so on between our 2 teams was made prevalent by posting and flaming by our main arch rivals in Pandemic Legion, we didn’t bother to reply to them because people would have made their minds up regardless of what was said so instead we just focused on the tournament. But to address the concerns entirely we have this to say:

In order to win the AT, you need to be dedicated, train a lot and most importantly be able to constructively criticize and edit setups based on tests and feedback. In order to do this you have to actively test them in a 12 on 12 setting. As I said above, warlords doesn’t have the numbers to test internally, nor is it a good plan to do so, so we looked for a team that was as equally dedicated and skilled, which left only one alliance: The Camel Empire. When training in such a small environment and for so long with a single training partner you get to know everything about their style, theory and execution. This means we approached any match against camel differently as another alliance, as we knew exactly how they think. This is as far as the relationship goes.

After AT11 Hydra (Old warlords) picked up Camel as practice partners because we saw we needed change, during AT12 Hydra did not do so well, we went out in the round of 8. Calling warlords a new alliance or a new team created just to cash in bets is incredibly short sighted, and shows a total ignorance to the history of either team. I’d argue that anyone making such claims with such a massive lack of knowledge can be fairly reliably dismissed.”

DHB Wildcat’s post mentions that Warlords and Camel shared a POS in wormhole space on Sisi, which was used for mutual practice bouts. Warlords and Camel also shared ship fittings, ingame logistics, spies, certain unique ships from previous AT wins, and the prizes that both teams received for first and second place, respectively. While all of the above were technically legal, it can be argued that sharing fittings, ships, and prizes is against the spirit of the tournament.

The true collusion and violation of AT rules, according to DHB Wildcat, was that the match between Camel and Warlords on August 29 was thrown in Camel’s favor:

“Match 2 – This is were the **** gets interesting. You’ll notice that we lost this fight but that the 2nd fight of the finals was almost identical with a totally different outcome. After this loss I was irate! I was yelling on coms and questioning Leadership thinking something was off. Then I get a skype convo by Kadesh.

[8/29/2015 1:43:30 PM] Kadesh: dont get depressed m8. Our matches were staged. We ran 1st setups predefined which were decided by online coinflip

[8/29/2015 1:43:44 PM] Kadesh: who lost 1st match was supposed to get ff/shallow vs heaven

[8/29/2015 1:43:57 PM] Kadesh: so we had just 1 real fight which we lost

[8/29/2015 1:44:32 PM] Kadesh: and 2nd was 0 chances for us to win

[8/29/2015 1:44:41 PM] Kadesh: this is to get more time to prep vs bo1 in losers

[8/29/2015 1:44:47 PM] Kadesh: otherwise we’d have like 20 minutes

[8/29/2015 1:44:56 PM] Kadesh: while tuskers had 40 or 1 hour

[8/29/2015 1:45:14 PM] Kadesh: and regarding finals we will talk again later with camels

[8/29/2015 1:45:33 PM] Kadesh: i want to win and will do everything to. We just couldnt set up semifinals because of massive PL rage on forums

[8/29/2015 1:45:42 PM] Kadesh: and we had to do ~real fights~

[8/29/2015 1:46:35 PM] Chris Gaidzik: well still not happy about it, but it really would have been nice if you let us know that before we bet several billions of isk on our team thinking we had a chance

[8/29/2015 1:46:44 PM] Kadesh: we had

[8/29/2015 1:46:48 PM] Kadesh: if we won 1st fight

[8/29/2015 1:46:53 PM] Kadesh: camels would throw 2nd

[8/29/2015 1:47:05 PM] Kadesh: it was just 1st match

[8/29/2015 1:47:17 PM] Kadesh: we basically reduced bo3 to bo1 + 1 additional match

[8/29/2015 1:47:31 PM] Kadesh: we also changed many fits so PL dont get an idea of what our setups are

[8/29/2015 1:47:43 PM] Kadesh: so it’s better for overall chances

[8/29/2015 1:48:20 PM] Kadesh: we can’t spread this info because if any ****** talks too much

[8/29/2015 1:48:26 PM] Kadesh: we’re banned as both teams”

DHB Wildcat ended his posting with a somber statement, “All in all I dont know what to think. I just know I’m pissed. And I waited this long so the guys that did this legitly could be rewarded for their efforts. Warlords and Camel leadership fixed 1 match I know of. As for the finals I dont know what to think. I honestly dont.”

The AT has a long history of skullduggery and controversy, even in recent years. This year, a pilot for TEST Alliance was disqualified from the tourney for flying for two teams, while CCP itself missed illegal flagship modules and incorrect arena warpins. ATXII saw CODE. banned from all future tourneys as penalty for not showing up to a match at all. Most telling is the controversy following ATIX, where Outbreak threw the final match to secure a win for the Hydra Reloaded team. Hydra and Outbreak were both banned from competing in ATX, and the former collapsed only to reform as Warlords of the Deep.

Opposing viewpoints for punitive action against the colluding parties were quickly posted to the EVE Online forums.

Aryth of Goonswarm wrote, “So lets see everyone on the teams banned from future AT’s. All prizes seized. We all knew they were Hydra A and Hydra B from the get go. CCP even knew but didn’t have enough to do anything. Well, now you do and this isn’t the first time this has happened. If you want the AT to be anything but a farce you need to come down super hard.“  

Meanwhile, Mr Rive of Sniggerdly stated, “Everyone knew this was going on. We called it. I called it. I also said they played it very well, I stand by that. I sent CCP logibro a mail halfway through the tournament outlining what I thought was going on. I’m pretty sure it was accurate on every count. I’m not saying this to be smug, im saying this because its important to understand it wasn’t just me who was upset, frustrated, and rendered apathetic by the performance camels of the deep put forward, especially in the finals. Things like this will ruin the tournament. I mean that sincerely […] dont take their prizes away, I suspect you will if you get concrete proof. I don’t think this is fair. Why? If it wasn’t for one of their team members outing it, they would have gotten away with it. It was the honesty and sportsmanship of one of their pilots that brought it to light.”

By the night of September 14, the leader of the Warlords AT team, Kadesh Priestess, posted an official rebuke to DHB Wildcat’s inflammatory posting:

“Any insinuation or accusation of collusion we categorically deny. Warlords played 100% to win every game, we put everything on the line in a number of matches, including those in which we are accused of “colluding.” Both teams played their hardest to win, and anyone saying otherwise does nothing more than discredit the team-mates you played with and trained with for over 3 months, tarnishes their name and reputation. I wasted hours trying to calm you down over minor and unimportant things these past few months including humoring all your ******* ******** setup ideas and I thought it was over with the end of the tournament but you still find a way to completely waste my time. Glad you left on your own.”

The bottom line is that EVE may not be an ideal venue for hosting a fair and balanced E-sports tournament. The metagame runs deep in the AT, which is not necessarily a bad thing, given EVE is a sandbox and any limitations in and of itself are harshly critiqued by the player base. It is not known at this time if any punitive action will be taken against Warlords or Camels, based upon the lack of any real concrete evidence. Even if the chat logs are real, Skype chat logs (or any chat log for that matter) can be forged. However, in recent weeks, CCP has taken a hard stance on comments made by individuals in out of game venues, most notably with the banning of Stunt Flores due to alleged impersonation of CCP Fozzie – although this occurred largely in the official CCP slack venue. While members of the EVE Online community have strongly advocated for the reversal of Stunt Flores’ ban, it is unclear if the sort of whistleblowing posted today will result in any similar consequences.

TMC has included the now-deleted raw posting made by ex-Warlords member DHB Wildcat to the EVE Online forums on page 2. The official statement made by Kadesh of Warlords has now been included on page 3 in its entirety. Special thanks to Myrddin Calyx of MRCHI for his assistance in research. :popcorn:

Update 1: On September 15 CCP posted the following to the EVE online forums:

“Hello,

Due to the ongoing investigation into the Warlords of the Deep and The Camel Empire teams in Alliance Tournament XIII, all prizes distributed to either team have been frozen and moved for safekeeping. This is intended to protect any further prospective buyers of these items in case we find that rules have been broken in the tournament and we need to remove prizes. Prize items will be returned to their original locations depending on the outcome of the investigation. Anyone affected by this should have received a mail from myself.

Prizes distributed to other teams are not affected by this action.
If you have been impacted by this and have further questions, please file a support ticket under Community.”

 

DHB Wildcat posted to the EVE online forums early September 14 the following transcript:

The moment came during the final weekend. For me and several of the Warlords pilots we knew something was wrong. This is the true story from a non leadership pilot of Warlords final weekend.

First some clearance. All things that I hated because they are underhanded but are / were absolutely legal.

-shared wormhole / pos / and joined new testing sisi corporation with camels.

– shared logistics and spies.

– shared set-ups

– shared AT uniques for matches between the teams during tournament. Or more specifically Camel used our AT ships for the most part.

– shared prizes. yep once Warlords and Camels took 1 and 2 we joined the prize pool of 80 ships and distributed prizes amongst both teams equally.

August 29th, Camel vs Warlords.

Match 1 – Legit fight. Except for some very wierd target calling. Was nothing like what had practiced. We should have won that fight. Also side note / this was the only match I didnt fly in because for the final weekend Kadesh SOS’d Garmon to come fly in case Haart couldnt be here. Instead he took my spot. Meh 4 months of practicing and working hard to be replaced by someone that had absolutely 0 input or help to the team prior to the final weekend…… I was a bit bitter. Garmon however manned up and realized that I was probably a better fit to fly the Battleships. Lets be honest Haart (Sgt Anti) missed 4 out of the 5 bump attempts he made and only side scraped a vulture once after it was already 30km away.

Match 2 – This is were the **** gets interesting. You’ll notice that we lost this fight but that the 2nd fight of the finals was almost identical with a totally different outcome. After this loss I was irate! I was yelling on coms and questioning Leadership thinking something was off. Then I get a skype convo by Kadesh.

[8/29/2015 1:43:30 PM] Kadesh: dont get depressed m8. Our matches were staged. We ran 1st setups predefined which were decided by online coinflip

[8/29/2015 1:43:44 PM] Kadesh: who lost 1st match was supposed to get ff/shallow vs heaven

[8/29/2015 1:43:57 PM] Kadesh: so we had just 1 real fight which we lost

[8/29/2015 1:44:32 PM] Kadesh: and 2nd was 0 chances for us to win

[8/29/2015 1:44:41 PM] Kadesh: this is to get more time to prep vs bo1 in losers

[8/29/2015 1:44:47 PM] Kadesh: otherwise we’d have like 20 minutes

[8/29/2015 1:44:56 PM] Kadesh: while tuskers had 40 or 1 hour

[8/29/2015 1:45:14 PM] Kadesh: and regarding finals we will talk again later with camels

[8/29/2015 1:45:33 PM] Kadesh: i want to win and will do everything to. We just couldnt set up semifinals because of massive PL rage on forums

[8/29/2015 1:45:42 PM] Kadesh: and we had to do ~real fights~

[8/29/2015 1:46:35 PM] Chris Gaidzik: well still not happy about it, but it really would have been nice if you let us know that before we bet several billions of isk on our team thinking we had a chance

[8/29/2015 1:46:44 PM] Kadesh: we had

[8/29/2015 1:46:48 PM] Kadesh: if we won 1st fight

[8/29/2015 1:46:53 PM] Kadesh: camels would throw 2nd

[8/29/2015 1:47:05 PM] Kadesh: it was just 1st match

[8/29/2015 1:47:17 PM] Kadesh: we basically reduced bo3 to bo1 + 1 additional match

[8/29/2015 1:47:31 PM] Kadesh: we also changed many fits so PL dont get an idea of what our setups are

[8/29/2015 1:47:43 PM] Kadesh: so it’s better for overall chances

[8/29/2015 1:48:20 PM] Kadesh: we can’t spread this info because if any ****** talks too much

[8/29/2015 1:48:26 PM] Kadesh: we’re banned as both teams

At this point I didnt know what to do. I was the bad guy. On a team breaking rules. I was and am torn. I wanted to quit. The only thing that kept me there were the guys that werent in leadership for both teams that were legitimately working their asses off to win. I couldn’t quit on them. I hated kadesh so much at this point. I didn’t really get along with him anyways before.

So we went on from there. Beating Tuskers. and then beating PL.

So now the finals. I don’t know what to even think of it myself.

Match 1 – Nothing to me seemed off here. Our set-up was designed to destroy the logi fast, which it did. Then just won on outlasting the opponent.

Match 2 – almost mirror match of what we lost to the first time we faced camels. I was nervous. Ran backwards 20 km to line up a bump. Then raged in and bumped vulture out of range. We killed it and then won after that. However it was nice using our regular set-ups and not having logi perma jammed.

Match 3 – Sacrifice the chremoa. So I dont know what to think. After the kadesh convo I was questioning everything. We removed most if not all RSB’s and replaced them with REECM. We then proceeded to get wrecked by damps………….

Match 4 – Finally got tired of the bullshit and told kadesh to shut up and took over calling. We played passive for a while. Kadesh neuting the primary claymore. I beeged and pleaded to the point of my voice going out for kadesh to stop being an idiot and go neut the logi. He wouldnt initially saying we had to neut the claymore. I finally told him I would take over the neuting and tackle, just go neut the GOD DAMN LOGI SO WE CAN KILL SOMETHING! So I sacrificed myself by tackling the claymore in my phoon and neuting it. now with the logi neuted the bombers started dieing. The claymore died. I deid but not before rage cruise put the second claymore into hull. Haart kiting at 60km was able to finish the claymore and then SNI’s with bomber help as the t3 wing killed bombers, until soldat went down in our own logi and then I made the call for the t3d to take down their logi. Which is why the last bomber didnt die right away.

All in all I dont know what to think. I just know Im pissed. And I waited this long so the guys that did this legitly could be rewarded for their efforts. Warlords and Camel leadership fixed 1 match I know of. As for the finals I dont know what to think. I honestly dont.

All I am certain of is that………….

1) There are still some good guys on the camel and warlord team that had no idea of what was going on and just worked their asses off!

2) PL / Exodus …… Im sorry you guys were up against overwhelming odds and did fantastically.

3) I have still not won an AT legitly and cannot call myself an AT champion.

4) This probably means I will never fly an AT again since I am leaving hydra and noone will probably take me in. lol

5) CCP I am sorry.

I am sorry to the camel and warlord guys that played this legit. You all rock.

Kadesh Priestess commenting officially on behalf of Warlords on the posting made by DHB Wildcat:

Evening all,

I have been left with the unpleasant task of replying to this post and accusation by a valued member of our AT Team. The DHB was crucial in many of the matches we had to win, his advice during matches with regards to target calling, positioning and general awareness were vital to us winning this year.

It is with great sadness that we’ve had to air some dirty laundry in public, and that the DHB felt unable to come to us privately and discuss his concerns about the matches or to validate any suspicious he may have had about the way in which either matches were conducted.

Within the DHB’s post, there are various opinions he has given which have been portrayed as facts which we will here debunk, sadly we’re going to have to be pretty brutal in our analysis:

Match 1: Warlords had brought typhoons the entire tournament, we were comfortable in this setup and it made sense for us to bring, however camels brought a setup that a tough nut to crack. The reason there was “wierd” target calling was that the DHB was not privy to any of the

theorycrafting decisions that were made during the construction of their of these setups. During tests we had not shot the ET buddy (bellicose) because we were testing the efficacy of the setup vs team who doesn’t know all details of how it works, in the real thing it was the obvious primary and that is exactly what we went for. Sadly our tactic failed as we lacked tackle/webs on our target due to screening and ECM drones and so we lost the match. As to the matter of the starting lineup of pilots; Warlords as a team has a very limited number of pilots to run with, however it had been discussed multiple times of removing the DHB entirely from matches because of his disruptive, long and frankly annoying method of communication. Against Camels, arguably one of the harder teams, we needed peace on comms. This decision was eventually overruled by myself.

Match 2: Camels brought a turtle. A strong one. We got out drafted, nothing more, nothing less. We gambled they would bring a different setup which was weaker to the typhoons, given the bans, and we were confident we could win and out execute them. The DHB has compared this to game 2 of the finals, people will note in game 2, we successfully bumped their vessels, and furthermore, Camels widow’s disconnected twice during the fight in the finals. Comparing these 2 and then drawing a conclusion that something must have been up is illogical.

The DHB has been part of Hydra for 3 years, during AT12 he happily accepted his Chameleon prize without any feelings of remorse of dishonour, and furthermore he won roughly 280bn isk betting on the fact that Camel would infact win with evebet, during AT13 he also acquired his AT ship quite happily and netted a modest 360bn on bets of us winning. Any such self loathing or feelings of despair would be believable, however if the DHB was truly as principled as he wants to sound he would not have accepted the chameleon he was given a year ago and the uniques he was given this year for his efforts.

As to the finals, Warlords had been executing and playing incredibly well the entire final day, we had crushed exodus, and then annihilated PL in matches that couldn’t even be considered close. The on form team performed much better than the team that hadn’t had much time to get into things.

I will focus on game 3 and 4. For any alliance, or any person, to say let us sacrifice a potential half a trillion isk to appease the opinion of a single alliance, they could be considered mentally challenged. Throughout the PL series, we switched 2 out of 5 RSBs to RECCMs, and camel had just brought a widow turtle, and we knew they had an Etana/Widow turtle. We did not change RSB/RECCM layout after PL fight, it has been kept-as is, as we considered jamms as bigger threat than damps. We lost only one RSB in the beginning because it was on the frigate.

During match 4, camel had brought a setup that could very well have won, however they were not playing like in training. So my original calls were correct until the game changed. DHB did a good job in changing the targets we should have been neuting, as our 2 fc’s tunnel visioned and we won. The DHB claiming a lot of praise for the decisions that match, however, is false and self serving. He did very little except get himself tackled out of position, and change the malice neuting target.

Now that we have dealt with his apparent ideas of how the matches go, a few words about his accusations and opinions:

The DHB was part of theorycrafting, and a pilot, this was the entirety of his involvement in the AT. His theory crafting suggestions were not listened to so he rage quit the channel multiple times. His ideas he posted on our suggestions forums were removed by him when they were analysed and dismissed. A large number of his suggestions revolved around using Alliance Tournament ships, or overly expensive, not in line with the meta, or insistent on using ships that were not effective at all, in other words, they were straight up bad.

Anything that he has posted or insinuated in his post, is his opinion and that is the entirety of its validity. He had no access to any of the leadership channels of Warlords, he was not privy to any discussions within leadership, nor was he involved in any of the FC’ing or decision making process before any match.

The DHBs bad temper and negative attitude throughout the entire alliance tournament caused many issues within the Warlords team, that prides itself on being a fairly healthy environment to be in. If things went against the DHBs way he had a tendency to go on tilt, and shout and scream on comms or ingame until his voice was heard, and then summarily dismissed. During the camel series he was incredibly angry at the fact that we had lost so badly, everyone in the team was down, however he was most notably incensed because of his nature. That chatlog is completely bullshit.

The DHBs bad temper and negative attitude throughout the entire alliance tournament caused many issues within the Warlords team, that prides itself on being a fairly healthy environment to be in. If things went against the DHBs way he had a tendency to go on tilt, and shout and scream on comms or ingame until his voice was heard, and then summarily dismissed. During the camel series he was incredibly angry at the fact that we had lost so badly, everyone in the team was down, however he was most notably incensed because of his nature. That chatlog is completely bullshit.

If CCP would require such empirical evidence as to our lack of collusion on any of the matches, we recorded much of our match communications, although we did not expect to have to release them (especially because of a deluded line member) and we would be willing to release them to disprove the accusations posted.

The long and the short of it is this: the DHB felt fairly undervalued this tournament, his opinions were generally disregarded, his attitude was terrible and he had a lot of friction with members of the team. He has cashed out over 800bn isk personally between the 2 tournaments he feels so bad about participating in, has gladly accepted his AT ships without qualm and infact asked to buy more, and further than that he is attempting to discredit 30+ people who trained hard, played hard and dedicated a lot of time to win a tournament that was arguably the best tournament in recent years. His opinions are his opinions and his alone, they do not reflect that actual facts, and more importantly his opinions are based on nothing more than conjecture, an inflated ego, and a strong belief in something that isn’t there.

Any insinuation or accusation of collusion we categorically deny. Warlords played 100% to win every game, we put everything on the line in a number of matches, including those in which we are accused of “colluding.” Both teams played their hardest to win, and anyone saying otherwise does nothing more than discredit the team-mates you played with and trained with for over 3 months, tarnishes their name and reputation. I wasted hours trying to calm you down over minor and unimportant things these past few months including humoring all your ******* ******** setup ideas and I thought it was over with the end of the tournament but you still find a way to completely waste my time. Glad you left on your own.

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